MOSCOW, August 2. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin has congratulated the Airborne Force personnel and veteran paratroopers on the Airborne Force Day, the Kremlin press service said.
"Today, we pay homage to the courageous and strong spirited people who chose the hard and demanding but honorable service in the Airborne Force," the president said in his congratulatory message. "They value their brothers in arms more than anything and are always ready to stand up for the defense of our Homeland. And of course, I would like to offer my most sincere gratitude to veteran paratroopers, who courageously wrote the history of the legendary Airborne Force," Putin added.
He stressed that soldiers and military officers continued to serve their country with dignity and honor, "they keep the military traditions of their predecessors and handle all the tasks set before them, showing excellent training skills, unity and devotion to duty."
August 2 marks the 87th anniversary of the Russian Airborne Force as on this day, 1930, a Russian paratrooper unit consisting of 12 people conducted the first parachute jumps during military exercises which took place near the city of Voronezh. In 1932, the massive establishment of airborne units began.
According to Russia’s Defense Ministry, the main goal of the Russian Airborne Force is participating in containment activities in strategic areas and fulfilling tasks in cooperation with other military branches aimed at resolving crisis situations in the period of threat and in the time of war. In the time of peace, the Russian Airborne Force continues to perform tasks concerning strategic deterrence and may also take part in peacekeeping operations.
Russia’s Airborne Force currently contains two air assault divisions - the 76th Guards Air Assault Division deployed to the city of Pskov and the Seventh Guards Mountain Air Assault Division (Novorossiysk), two airborne divisions - 98th Guards Airborne Division (Ivanovo) and the 106th Guards Airborne Division (Tula), four airborne brigades - the11th Guards Air Assault Brigade (Ulan-Ude), the 31st Guards Air Assault Brigade (Ulyanovsk), the 56th Guards Air Assault Brigade (Kamushin) and the 83rd Guards Air Assault Brigade (Kubinka), as well as the 45th Guards Independent Reconnaissance Brigade. Besides, the Russian Airborne Force also includes logistics units and educational establishments.